Should We Send Humans Into Space?

Andrew Sullivan —  Jan 30 2012 @ 5:41pm

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Frum labels a moon colony a colossal waste of resources:

Most of the research purpose of sending human beings into space is to test the effects of sending human beings into space. The missions exist to test whether the missions can continue. This seems the very definition of futility.

Tim Cavanaugh skips past the moon and considers colonization of Mars. He argues that humans will have to undergo major genetic engineering if they are going to survive such a trip:

“Terraforming” remains a popular concept in science fiction, where other worlds usually come with pressurized, breathable atmospheres and so many “desert planets” and “ice planets” have weather suspiciously close to that of Terran countries with low film production costs. In reality it’s not easy to effect climate change even on Earth, and settlers on an alien body will need to adapt themselves to the planet before they can adapt the planet to themselves. 

(Kaczynski's tweet links to a newspaper article from 1997)